It's still over two months away but it's never to early to start talking NBA Draft. This season we have two Canadians projected to be introduced into the young money club but there could possibly be two others. Can Ball Ray takes an early look at the two other guys that could be seeing their names next to an NBA team on the Draft board in June ...
It's been about three weeks since the last piece of confetti has fallen gracefully from the sky to celebrate a Kentucky win in this year's NCAA Tournament. What that essentially means for us is that the college season is over and the NBA Draft talk can now begin.
Last season was a banner one from a Canadian perspective with both Tristan Thompson and Cory Joseph being selected in the First Round of the annual young money convention but this season looks to possibly be better. Tough there will likely not be another Canuck pair being selected in the First Round there is a possibility of three or four kids being selected overall.
Looking over the list of Draft eligible seniors, there are some very intriguing candidates to land on NBA rosters. But of them the most likely are the quartet of Andrew Nicholson, Kris Joseph, Robert Sacre and Devoe Joseph.
Looking over the current mock draft by our friends over at DraftExpress.com, they have Nicholson pegged as the last pick of the first round going to Chicago and Kris Joseph as the 22nd pick of the second round going to Golden State. Not bad places for both of them to be sitting in right now leading up to June for sure.
Nicholson and K-Jo are the two with the best shots at being selected right now. Kris has been on the mock Draft boards since his sophomore season at Syracuse while people are only now realizing the immense talent that Nicholson has causing him to shoot up the charts since the Atlantic-10 Tournament and his conference Player of the Year season. These two will have the best shots at getting picked as of right now.
Sacre and Devoe on the other hand are two guys that can still sneak their way somewhere in my opinion.
The tag of "soft" big man has hit Sacre of late and despite him being on previous mock Draft boards in recent years, he's slipped off now and may need to have some good workouts to get back in. What he has going for him is that he's big (7'0" ft. at about 260 lbs.) and he's got mobility and that is at a premium at the NBA level.
Devoe on the other hand is a sweet shooting two guard who, after a lackluster start at Minnesota that included a team suspension, he really came out this year for Oregon to be one of the elite backcourt players in the Pac-12. Like Sacre, Devoe has a single skill that can possibly pave a way to an NBA contract in his shooting but he has also grown into a good overall player outside that.
Both players are sitting on the outside looking in on the 2nd round at this time and with the coming Draft combine in May, they will both need to show out between then and the Draft. Sacre was not in attendance at the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament last week that showcased seniors but Devoe was. Devoe showed that he could be a playmaker averaging 5.6 assists in his time there, which was good for third among all players but also had only 3 total turnovers (You can find his complete stats from the event here.). Those numbers all definitely helped his case for an NBA look for sure.
The four Canadians have made the Draft Express Top 100 Prospect list for this year's edition of the Draft. Devoe is currently in the 87 spot with Sacre sitting nine spots up at 78. Kris is just outside the top 50 at 53 and Nicholson is the highest on the list at 30. Of course this list very fluid and could change as players opt to stay in school and the pre Draft workouts begin. Sacre and Devoe will have the tougher task of playing into a spot and though tough it isn't impossible. For the time being we are left sitting and waiting for June to see if this year's NBA Draft unfolds for our kids.